Categorised | Business & Finance

All Competent Leaders Share These Virtues

Leaders often aren’t born, they’re made. It does take time to craft yourself into one. You might not do it purposefully. You might not have even planned to become a leader in a chosen field. But thankfully, becoming one is possible if you’re willing to keep in mind a set of principles that can help you overcome challenges, and make the most of that in front of you. While not all of us can be leaders, many people can become a leader if they believe themselves capable of learning, being humbled, and trying time and time again.

Leadership is not a comfortable, easy position, but unfortunately many people treat it like that. In the military, an officer will need to lead from the front, to take the full responsibility for the failings in his team, and share the victories amongst them. Leadership is often a fairly thankless and tiring task, but succeeding, helping the journey to  become more tolerable for everyone involved, and generally working in the best manner possible can help the life of a leader shine, and for results to come through hard and fast.

For any developing leaders, or anyone who considers this role a potential part of their future career or personal project planning might want to consider the marks and virtues of a great leader, so they can work by this inspiration alone:

Inspiration

Leaders aren’t saints. They often don’t have a divine light within them, blossoming the best ideas and the best visions and the best designs to move forward. They don’t know everything. They also don’t retain insane levels of motivation from day to day. They are people like you and me. However, leaders make inspiration a very real part of their daily habits. They might not sit down and think ‘this is a time for me to be inspired, as I have planned in my schedule.’ Instead it’s in the choices they make, the content they absorb, the people they surround themselves with and the long-term plans they have for their life.

Inspiration comes from success, but it can also come from failure, and the good leader knows that. This is important to remember, because in the early days, they can be sure that failure will come with much more rapidly than success every will. Thankfully, doing this is more than possible, but it just takes time to steward. Reading books, studying the paths of people they admire, and generally trying to emulate the best person they can be helps.

There are also two words that can strike inspiration in the hearts of any fantastic leader. They are ‘why not?’ Asking yourself this can be a real boon when faced with challenge. When considering if you can overcome a hurdle, thinking ‘why not?’ puts you in the mindset of ‘well, what if I actually did it? Would it be worth the heavy effort?’ This opens a door of possibility in the mind of the person asking it. A famous quote reads ‘whether you think you can or you can’t, you’re usually right.’ This means that inspiration is an attitude, and a daily driver more than one momentous event. If you haven’t found it in your life yet, keep looking. It only takes a single drop of inspiration to slowly open the floodgates and allow all action to be filled with positive intention, no matter how hard you have to work.

Knowledge

Leaders aren’t above those they lead. They are right there with them. For that reason, they for sure better be head and shoulders above them in terms of competence. Giving orders isn’t enough. A leader needs to be focused, know the context behind every action, and continually seek to refine their knowledge. It might be that they spend one day learning about something highly specific, such as how Sydney LEC variable speed drivers might optimize the use of their supply line conveyor belts, preventing a manufacturing issue from occuring in the future, and knowing how to implement that with haste. Next, it might be reading a new book containing the new clinical research on the psychology of team motivation and how to get the most from the people under you.

Personal knowledge and reflecting can come into play heavily also. It seems we’ve all worked for a manager at some point who thought they could do no wrong. Managers can sometimes forget to learn that they are human too, and that they are sometimes in the wrong. If you find yourself able to reflect on your actions and try to see them in the most objective light, you have made knowledge your friend, and you will continually seek to develop in the best sense. Employees thrive under a leader able to do this.

Perseverance

A leader figures out very quickly that despite their best effort, their best work ethic, applying everything they know and being patient with the results can sometimes STILL culminate in a negative consequence. Sometimes, nothing works no matter how great the leader. This is where perseverance comes in, the last virtue of the great leader. History has no small pool of examples of leaders who’ve managed to overcome the odds by dealing with crippling defeat with patience, determinism and a willingness to keep themselves focused.

Of course, while this might seem like some quite extreme battle-like motivating talk, something you’d say to a general before heading into war, it’s no less true when dealing with the difficulties of a business facing debts, or when trying to resolve a bad business deal. It’s no less true when the sports team you manage is struggling to score any points. The real leader can weather these difficult periods and act as the emotional rock for their team. From there, the chances of resolving matters and coming out the victor is increased, as no one wins if giving up.

With these simple tips, and the willingness to ensure you take care of yourself as well as try your best, you’re sure to become a leader worth admiring.

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